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Comparison of techniques to assess young children’s consumption of processed complementary foods in community-based studies


Hess, S. Y., Peerson, J. M., Huapaya, A., de Romana, D. L., Arsenault, J. E., Penny, M. E., & Brown, K. H. (2006). Comparison of techniques to assess young children's consumption of processed complementary foods in community-based studies. In [20], pp. A1048–A1048. .


Simple assessment methods are needed to measure processed complementary food (PCF) consumption by young children, especially in targeted intervention programs. In a community-based trial, we compared methods to assess intake of PCF by 302 children aged 6–8 mo who were given 250 g bags of dry PCF weekly for 6 mo. Mothers were instructed to feed their children ~30 g/d. The different measurements were: 1) 1–2 whole-day weighed food records at 2 different time points (n = 640); 2) field-worker observation of PCF preparation and consumption during brief household visits every 2–3 d and calculation of the total daily PCF consumption by summing any additional reported PCF intake for that same day (n = 20182); 3) maternal reports, based on the number of standardized spoonfuls reportedly consumed (n = 29812); 4) daily average disappearance rates, as calculated by dividing the amount removed from the bags between household visits by the number of days between visits (n = 50176). The mean (SD) amounts of PCF consumed over the whole study period (g dry weight/d), as estimated by the respective methods were: whole-day observation, 23.8 (13.2); brief observation, 23.3 (8.1); reported, 22.7 (8.5); disappearance rate, 27.4 (6.3). There were no significant differences between means for the 3 former methods, but the amount assessed by disappearance rate was significantly higher (P